Habito’s story

Founded in 2016 when founder, Daniel Hegarty, nearly lost his dream home due to a frustrating, time-consuming and outdated mortgage application process. Today, Habito is using AI and great product design to transform the mortgage industry and fix a broken market, to make it work for the borrower.

The Opportunity

In a category typified by a lack of brands, Habito decided to build a powerful and distinctive NEW brand outside of the traditional big banks & building societies.

TV was identified as the most powerful way to build a trusted and loved new brand, and to communicate an emotional brand proposition in a medium that embodies scale and gravitas.

Habito’s first TV commercial

Habito carried out a limited test in a single ITV region (ITV Meridian - the South East)

Habito commissioned the French Graphic Artist Nicolas Ménard to create the TV ad which focused on the algorithms that are part of Habito’s recommendation system.

The Founders at Habito had experience with TV advertising from previous roles so hopes were high.

Habito’s first TV commercial didn’t perform as hoped, partly because the brand had made the “classic mistake” of creating an advert for themselves and not their audience. Most people in the UK have got no idea what an algorithm is, it was fintech making an ad for other people in fintech.

How Habito optimised its DRTV commercial


Testing different air times and a different channel mix


Branding was placed upfront, at the beginning of the ad


The main call to action was held for 3-seconds longer


The voice over was changed to make this ‘softer’

Banking on a national campaign 

Habito had estimated that for a national TV campaign to have enough impact 350+ ‘ratings’ would need to be purchased. However, the problem was that Habito could only afford around half this amount and therefore the creative effectiveness of Habito’s new TV advertising had to make-up this shortfall.

2% (ONLY) 2% Habito brand awareness

1.5m (ONLY) 1.5m mortgages processed annually

86% (UP TO) 86% use a mortgage intermediary

When should you employ your first agency?

Habito made the decision to employ their first advertising agency - the London based ‘Uncommon’ - to develop a series of animated commercials focused on consumers’ fears about mortgage applications and how Habito could relieve them.


“I think the right time to engage an advertising agency is when you have raised enough money to really start to build the brand, beyond the early growth stage. For me, Series B funding seems like the natural focal point.”

Abba Newbery, Habito CMO

Programmes with large engaged audiences  were the most effective  at driving traffic and brand awareness

“There is a strongly held belief that you can growth-hack your way to rapid growth with technology brands. We are delighted to have bucked that trend to show that a deep investment and belief in building your brand through traditional channels like TV can be highly effective, and sustainable from a unit-economics perspective”

Abba Newbery, Habito CMO

habito graph.png

The results of Habito’s national brand campaign

2x (DOUBLED) Spontaneous brand awareness

3.5x (UP) 3.5x customer volumes

3x (TRIPLED) 3x advertising awareness

75% (DOWN) 75% lower acquisition costs

Habito case study - Key Takeaways


Start simple – use existing assets where possible and aim for ‘good enough’ not creative genius 


Match the creative approach to your objective 


Optimise for response to drive efficiency but be aware that it won’t build future value


When you’re confident the channel works, use creativity to fuel effectiveness

Start your journey today

If you’re a digital brand that has not advertised on TV before and would like to work directly with ITV to achieve brand fame and drive growth in a cost-effective way, then talk to us today! We can provide matched funding of at least 50%, as well as support with planning, creative production and campaign evaluation. Email our dedicated team on adventuresignite@itv.com

Keep up to date

Keeping up to date with the latest insights and inspiration from ITV Commercial is easy

Stay in the loop